Prof. Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira once wrote, that the modern world suffers under the influence of those who wish “to underestimate or deny the notions of good and evil, Original Sin, and the Redemption.”1 This accomplished, individual culpability and the very concept of justice would fall by the wayside.
Today, the gun control debate offers ironclad proof of this statement.
The gun-control lobby rallies in the name of peace and safety. By distorting some facts, turning a deaf ear to others or telling outright lies, they suggest that unrestricted access of law-abiding citizens to guns would lead to apocalyptic levels of carnage on the streets. Instead they point to a utopian world of joy and peace in which gun confiscation would solve all problems. Thus, they fill their ranks with “useful innocents,” ignorant of the underlying agenda they promote.
Their reasoning is false because they ascribe the evil of criminals to the instrument they use. Thus, they believe that taking guns off the streets will eradicate evil.
There is a sharp contrast between this theory of disarmament and the teachings of Our Lord. Mindful that evil exists in people and not inanimate objects, He exhorts us to defend ourselves with the force of arms. “When a strong man armed keepeth his court, those things are in peace which he possesseth” (Luke 11:21).
In consonance with this teaching, it has been said that there will always be wolves in the world and that disarming the sheep will not make the wolves go away, but provide them with an easier meal. The facts substantiate this:
— Violent crime drops 4% for every 1% gun ownership increases
— States enacting concealed carry laws experienced a 10% decrease in murder and a 4.4% decrease in violent crime from 1977-1994
— It is estimated that guns are used for defense in the U.S. up to 3.6 million times each year2
— In 98% of reported cases, criminals flee the moment they find out that their victim is armed3
These cold statistics are brought to life by real-life stories of criminals who got an unexpected surprise when their innocent victims fought back.
Sammie Foust, a 100-pound, 49-year-old woman was alone, cleaning her house when a sadistic, 200-pound man broke in and began cutting her face, in hopes of forcing her to give up her valuables. Although she cooperated with him, he persisted in his torture. Fortunately, she was able to get hold of a pistol and shoot him four times, killing him. After seeing the cruelty of her torture, paramedics cheered upon hearing that her assailant was dead.
When Paul Brite of Coral Springs, Florida was carjacked and forced into his trunk, luckily he remembered that he had two pistols hidden there. After driving him out of the city, the carjacker opened the trunk to find Mr. Brite ready and waiting. After firing three warning shots in the air and commanding him to lie down, the assailant reached quickly for his right pocket, when the intended victim shot him in the abdomen. Hearing the noise, an accomplice then drove onto the scene, unrolled his window, presumably to shoot Mr. Brite, and received a round in his car’s passenger-side door, causing him to flee. He was arrested later on that day.
In all of these cases, police protection, even if successful, would have served only to apprehend the criminals after the crime. “The police are a reactionary force,” said intended victim Gary Baker. “They only react after a crime. So it’s up to the individual to protect himself or herself.”4
Indeed, the police can only prevent crime indirectly.
Their job consists, primarily, in apprehending criminals after they have committed crimes. Thus the right to keep and bear arms is inextricably linked to the right of self-defense.
After Judy Davis broke up with her boyfriend Robert Stella, he began stalking her. He would call her incessantly, follow and threaten her. Miss Davis became frightened and turned to the police. A restraining order was immediately put on Mr. Stella, but he repeatedly disregarded it. When he turned violent and beat Miss Davis, she decided to take matters into her own hands. She bought a gun and learned how to use it.
Predictably, Mr. Stella did not let up. One evening when Miss Davis was out walking her dog, he appeared and charged her. After running inside and locking the door, she ran into her bedroom to get her gun just as the door blew open with a loud crash.
She ran back to the door and pointed the gun at Mr. Stella, ordering him to leave. Again he charged her, but this time she did not flee. She emptied the revolver into his chest causing him to flee. Hysterical, she called 911. Mr. Stella was apprehended and later sentenced to fifteen years in prison.5
Influenced by a liberal agenda, the media seldom report these stories. Only when guns are used for evil do they feel a story newsworthy. Thus, an ocean of negative press can often discourage gun-rights’ activists.
These stories can be a source of encouragement for them as well as anyone else who believes in the existence of evil and the subsequent need for self-defense.
The Second Amendment is something that every American should hold dear. These stories go beyond cold statistics, and offer a more human side of the story which gives life to an otherwise sterile debate. May Our Lady help Americans reaffirm this basic right and thus leave them the option to remain, like these intended victims, armed and unharmed.
- Prof. Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira, Revolution and Counter-Revolution, The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property (TFP) 1993, p. 65.
- These statistics are taken from a study made by John Lott and David Mustard in 1997 titled “Crime, Deterrence, and Right-to-Carry Concealed Handguns” and published in the prestigious Journal of Legal Studies (v.26, no. 1, p. 1-68, January 1997). To date it is the largest study ever made on the subject.
- Poe, Richard, The Seven Myths of Gun Control, Prima Publishing, Roseville, California, 2001, p. 107.
- As quoted in The Best Defense True Stories of Intended Victims Who Defended Themselves with a Firearm, by Robert Waters, Cumberland House, 1998.
- All these stories were reported in Robert Water’s book, quoted above.